Before & After: An Architect's Tiny Office Makeover

Before & After: An Architect's Tiny Office Makeover

Allison Verdoorn
Mar 21, 2011

When architect Stacey Hanley wanted a space to work in at home she turned to a small dormer room in her 1936 home. Using creative storage, great space planning and accessories from around the house, Stacey has created an office that gives her plenty of room to work while keeping the footprint of the space small. Check out this great makeover after the jump.

Stacey's previous office did not provide enough storage with there was only one file cabinet and 2 drawers. Her drafting supplies, books and magazines were all stored throughout the rest of her 1936, 1600 square foot home, taking up needed storage space elsewhere and were not immediately accessible during office use. Other than the desk area, the rest of the room was under-utilized and became a catch all for homeless belongings creating a visually-cluttered and distracting space; especially so for a talented designer like her.

The dormer room, used by the previous owner as a playroom for children (hence the bright blue everywhere, including the ceiling) is narrow with a slanting ceiling, so storage had to be carefully planned. Shelves couldn't block the desk or extend too high because of the ceiling.

Wanting to keep the budget low and re-use what she had, Stacey used old paint she had on hand from other projects. Paying special attention to the ceiling and trim (painting them white) really made a difference in the quality of light and the sense of space. The old black track lighting no longer seems quite so hideous, so she is planning to keep it instead of replacing it.

Ikea shelves laid on their sides and an Ikea counter top became an inexpensive yet storage-laden desk solution, making use of the narrow room more efficiently. The new design provides tons of storage and countertop work space. All of her office supplies now fit easily into this small space and has opened up storage in the rest of the house, always a plus!

Ikea storage baskets and magazine holders manage visual clutter.

The rest of the d├ęcor is found objects from around the house: milk glass vases hold succulents, old design projects adorn the walls, ceramic from travels abroad serve as an 'inbox'. Stacey really tried to limit all new purchases to the shelving, countertop and storage/organization accessories.

Great work Stacey.

Find out more about Stacey Hanley here.

(Images: Stacey Hanley)

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